Moody was able to hit the ground running after several years working as Sean Brock's sous chef at McCrady's in Charleston. "When I arrived here in Nashville, everyone was already very set in their procedures," shares Moody. "I was able to just observe for a while with Sean and then jump right in." Moody was already at McCrady's when Brock arrived from the Capitol Grille in Nashville, and the two chefs worked the kitchen together while Brock was breaking ground with his experiments in molecular gastronomy. After a total of 7-and-a-half years at McCrady's, Moody made the decision to move to Manhattan just as the original Husk restaurant began construction.
Moody took a gig with chef George Mendes at his restaurant Aldea, a modern interpretation of seasonal Iberian cuisine that was exciting to the new sous. "Sean and George are very similar in style, but the ingredients and menu were driven toward Spain and Portugal. I learned a lot working at Aldea."
After three years working with Mendes, Moody (who's originally from Asheville, N.C.) decided he wanted to return to the South. "Between going to culinary school at Johnson and Wales and working at McCrady's, I had spent 10 years in Charleston. I reached out to Sean when he was visiting in New York City, but at the time there wasn't an opening at either Husk." When the position opened up, Moody jumped at the opportunity.
"I had never really experienced Nashville, but I sure had heard a lot about the restaurant scene in town. It's been a blast to discover a new place while getting to work with Sean again."
Yazoo Brewing will be hosting the second annual Embrace the Funk Fest on Sunday, May 4, from 2-5 p.m. at the brewery at 910 Division St. According to the official invitation:
Tickets are $50 per person in advance and $60 at the door, but I suggest buying in advance and getting to the event as early as possible to get all the good stuff and a glass of wine before the crowds arrive.
Another tip: Enter a contest to win tickets! A number of local food bloggers are hosting giveaways in the next couple of weeks. Check out the blogs Eat.Drink.Smile, Fearless Homemaker, Lannae’s Food and Travel, Lesley Eats (that’s me!), Local Forkful, and Spinach Tiger for your chance to win tickets to the event.
Participating restaurants this year include:
It's the former site of Fish & Grits and later Mac's Cafe, though there is significant rebuilding going on: The restaurant announcement touts 4,000 square feet of "convertible open-air dining with garage doors on all sides" with seating for approximately 145 people.
Austin Smith and Nick Jacobson are the co-owners of Party Fowl, something of a departure from their fine-dining spot 360 Bistro (located on the west side, at the Highway 70/100 split), though both restaurants have a wine component: Party Fowl will serve 50 wines by the glass, along with a menu of cocktails and local beer on tap.
In addition to the fried chicken, there will be a smoker on the premises producing smoked chicken and wings. The kitchen will be open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and the announcement promises the bar will serve a late-night menu until last call.
Note to TV avoiders: "There will be wall to wall televisions for sports enthusiasts and late summer SEC and NFL football kickoffs."
Watch for updates on the Party Fowl Nashville page on Facebook.
Union Common will be a "125-seat social concept steakhouse," focusing on shared plates for group dining, restaurant company DC Management announced today.
The address, 1929 Broadway, includes the triangular lot where Broadway and Division split. It's next door to Two Boots Pizza, which also fills former Great Escape space. (It's a very restaurant-dense part of Midtown, close to Noshville, The Slider House and Soulshine Pizza, among others.)
DC Management is best-known for two popular Louisville restaurants: the French-inspired La Coop: Bistro à Vins, and Doc Crow’s Southern Smokehouse. The team includes Steven and Michael Ton, master sommelier Brett Davis (a frequent visitor to Nashville) and attorney Chip Hamm, along with Benjamin.
Benjamin is a veteran chef who has done stints in several notable kitchens, including Nashville's Capitol Grille, where he worked under Sean Brock (later of Husk), and Flyte World Dining and Wine. (He was a memorable competitor in the first installment the Scene's Iron Fork event in 2008, and was known for dazzling experiments in liquid nitrogen.)
Later Benjamin left Nashville to work at the Oakroom at the Seelbach Hotel in Louisville, then the two aforementioned DC Management restaurants.
Let's see if we can come up with some easy ways to differentiate them. The best I've come with for me personally is that the Music City Food + Wine Festival (The Festival Formerly Known as Music City Eats) is the one organized by the Kings of Leon. So it has a musical component, thus "Music City" is the mnemonic key. (Alternately, we could use a Prince-like name like TFFKAMCE, but that would get tiresome and awkward quickly.) So here's my memory tip: Music City = Kings of Leon, and Nashville = Midtown.
The Nashville Wine & Food Festival is happening sooner (June instead of September), and tickets are already on sale. It' set for noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 14, at Riverfront Park, and will feature wines from around the country, poured alongside dishes from some of Nashville's best restaurants. There will be a Food Village along with a Beer Garden and spirits tastings. There will also be musical stages showcasing The Wheeler Sisters, Kindred Roots, Suzie Brown and Peter Erikson. (Oops, that's music — there goes that easy point of differentiation.)
The marathon and half marathon courses go right past the market on Rosa Parks Boulevard, which is Mile Marker 11 on the course, so you'll be able to see all the runners, the fastest of whom will probably run by as early as 7:45 a.m. The viewing party lasts until 11 a.m. and will include food truck fare and beer, wine and nonalcoholic drinks for purchase and is free and open to all ages. There will be live music and an appearance by Mayor Karl Dean as well.
VIP tickets are available for $50 per person and include a brunch catered by Riffs Fine Street Food, two drink tickets, and a dedicated seated marathon viewing and cheering area. Take note: If you want to park at the market, you'll need to arrive before 6 a.m. because Rosa Park Boulevard will be closed starting at that time. Any time after that, you'll need to park and walk or bike over to the market to join in the viewing party. Marathon road closure information can be found on the marathon's website.
Starting at noon (when Rosa Parks Boulevard is scheduled to reopen for automobile traffic), the real “Market Takeover” begins, as more than 15 Nashville Food Truck Association trucks showcase their skills and the great food available at the Nashville Farmers’ Market. There will be more live music, beverages for purchase, and seasonal menu items from the following trucks:
Riffs Fine Street Food, Smoke Et Al, Grilled Cheeserie, Jonbalaya, Music City Pie Co, Retro Sno, Delta Bound, Bacon Nation, Two Guys in a Lunch Box, Hoss’ Loaded Burgers, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Hip Sweet Subs, Smoothie King and Julia’s Bakery.
Woodford Reserve is the official bourbon of the Kentucky Derby, which is kind of like being the official water of the Pacific Ocean ... it's a big deal. In honor of their affiliation with the derby, they are again offering the "$1,000 Mint Julep" to well-heeled patrons to raise money to benefit Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Center. The Woodford Reserve $1,000 Mint Julep program has raised $384,000 for horse and humanitarian charities since its inception in 2006.
So what do you (well, more likely a Kardashian) get for a cool grand? A custom-engraved, gold-plated trophy cups will be filled with hand-crafted ingredients with a rose theme, including rosewater and muddled rose petals, and presented inside a box made from bourbon barrel staves and lined with Vineyard Vines fabric. The rose theme is actually quite appropriate, since the derby is know as "The Run for the Roses," and the word "julep" is derived from the Persian word "gulab," which means rosewater. In honor of the 89th derby, Woodford will only be offering 79 of these high-end $1,000 beauties plus 10 more at $2,000, which includes a gold-plated cup with a sterling silver medallion. (Y'know, in case you want to make Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari look like cheapskates.)
For the rest of us, Woodford's sister brand Old Forrester will be providing the kick in the standard $8 juleps that will be sold at Churchill Downs, and they sell a bunch of them. On average, derby patrons consume 127,000 juleps on race day requiring 2 tons of mint!
Even if you won't be heading north for Derby Day, you can re-create the experience at home for your own viewing party or at your Steeplechase tailgater. Woodford has provided the recipes for their $1,000 julep and several other variations that can jazz up your fete. Even more entertaining is the idea of setting up a julep bar for your guests to create their own versions of the classic cocktail. Set one of these up on the tailgate of your Steeplechase vehicle (no glass, please!), and you'll be the most popular spot in the Stirrup Club.
Read on for the recipes:
Anyhoo, check out the recipes I shared (my own as well as recipes from some other bloggers). If this kind of thing interests you, there’s also a great new book that has more than a hundred party food recipes that are all vegan. Vegan Finger Foods by Celine Steen and Tami Noyes features recipes inspired by cuisine from all over the world. There’s pub-style food such as chipotle almonds, barbecue jackfruit, and nacho potato skins, as well as Ethiopian sambusas, salsas, “egg-less” rolls, falafel fritters, meatless balls, and Jamaican jerk tempeh skewers. There’s something to please anyone and everyone. And of course, there's an entire chapter devoted to bite-size sweet treats.
Like any good vegan cookbook, Vegan Finger Foods has helpful information on ingredients, how to make substitutions, and other tips. There’s also a nifty “Menu Suggestions” section to help you plan themed evenings or prepare foods appropriate for the nature of your shindig. Vegan Finger Foods is available in bookstores and on Amazon.
Several folks affiliated with the Scene and our sister publications will be hosting meals for the event.
Here's the list:
Marché — Elizabeth Jones and Jack Silverman (aka me!) on behalf of Nashville Scene
Epice — Abby White and Maggie Bond on behalf of Nfocus
Husk — Chris Ferrell and Heather Cantrell on behalf of Nashville Post
Provence (downtown) — Chris Chamberlain, Bites contributor
Come join us! And here's a complete list of participating restaurants.
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